Dallas Native Voice | The Importance of a Buyer’s Agent

Mary Beth Harrison:        Hi this is Mary Beth Harrison with Dallas Native Voice. And today I’m sitting with Zack Thomas, our buyer specialist on our team and, Zack, talk to me about buyer specialist. What does that even mean?

Zack Thomas:                     Well what that means is I specialize in only buyers. So instead of trying to focus on both sides, buy, lease, and sell, I just work with buyers. And so part of that for me is hunting. In this market, now that the market is kind of leveling out a little bit we have a lot more inventory for our buyers.

Mary Beth Harrison:        Which is a good thing.

Zack Thomas:                     Yes, it’s great because a few months ago I couldn’t find anything for buyers, now I have plenty of things to find. So I really have to focus on what is hitting the market, what everything is worth, and then my negotiation practices just to get my buyers the best deal possible.

Mary Beth Harrison:        Okay, so you’re out looking at the market every day, right?

Zack Thomas:                     Yes.

Mary Beth Harrison:        Whether you have a buyer there or not, you’re just kind of keeping an eye on what’s coming on and keeping an eye on the market. So, let’s just say I’m one of your buyers and I don’t really know where I want to live yet. I just know I want to spend this much money and I want to be no more than 30 minutes from my work. So how does that work?

Zack Thomas:                     Well, so then is what we’d start with is where your work is and then we would work out from there. In my mind, knowledge is power in this market especially, so you got to know what you’re going to get in the different areas.

Mary Beth Harrison:        Okay.

Zack Thomas:                     Dallas is very kind of segregated by terms of price. So you have areas where you’re going to have million dollar properties and you’re going to have areas where you have three to 400, so on and so forth. So is what we do is try to find the areas that your price point fits in that are within 30 minutes from work and then work from there.

Mary Beth Harrison:        Okay so then we’d go see what is my money buy me here, what does it buy me here, what does it buy me over here.

Zack Thomas:                     Yes.

Mary Beth Harrison:        Got it, okay, so then I can decide, wow, I didn’t even know this neighborhood existed or now that I do let’s look or not that I see it I don’t want to be here.

Zack Thomas:                     Yes. And that’s typically how I really like to base my searches on is let everyone know, unless they know the neighborhood they’re in love with, let’s go see a lot of neighborhoods because most people are only familiar with what they’ve been shown before and there’s so many hidden gems in Dallas that this is the way you find them.

Mary Beth Harrison:        Right, which is what we bring to the table, is have our knowledge of Dallas be so strong.

Zack Thomas:                     Yes.

Mary Beth Harrison:        That we know areas they might not have otherwise known.

Zack Thomas:                     Yes.

Mary Beth Harrison:        Which is great. So, all right, so I found the house that I want. Now what?

Zack Thomas:                     Now typically you would have already been pre-qualified because before we start our search we always love to start our search with what can we afford.

Mary Beth Harrison:        Right.

Zack Thomas:                     Just so that we can keep everyone in line. I say keep everyone in check because emotions tend to get the best of most buyers so if you know from the start what your max budget is, we work from there. So at this point is what we do, we would sit down and we would come up with a good price point that we think the house is worth based on running a CMA, our current market analysis of the area, and then we’d work from there.

Mary Beth Harrison:        So, all right, let me understand. So just because something is priced at $300,000, that might not be the right price for it, is that what you’re telling me?

Zack Thomas:                     That’s exactly what I’m telling you.

Mary Beth Harrison:        So we’re going to look at all of the data around what has sold in that neighborhood and come up with the right price of what we think the house should sell for.

Zack Thomas:                     Yes.

Mary Beth Harrison:        So that people aren’t overpaying for something, or when we think it’s a really good value.

Zack Thomas:                     Yes, yes, that’s exactly what we’re going to do. I don’t want my clients to ever overpay. Now there are times where I’ve had clients overpay because everyone else wanted the same house. So then it just becomes how much do you want the house. But when I have conservative buyers that had that budget or are keeping the budget in mind, that is where we go when we run the CMA and we look at all the aspects, what has sold in the last 30 days, 60 days, 90 days, and try to find the most comparable properties. Because that’s how we’re going to find our basis of value.

Mary Beth Harrison:        You know, one thing I’ve heard comments made about you over and over again is, we told him this is what we wanted to spend and that’s what he showed us. He didn’t try and show us this when in fact what we could afford was this. That’s a waste of everyone’s time.

Zack Thomas:                     Yes.

Mary Beth Harrison:        And so it’s something I know our clients really appreciate as do I. We never want our clients paying more than what they’re comfortable with or what they’re told they can afford. That’s just, that’s not the goal here. So speaking of the goal here, how do you determine what it is. So a buyer calls and you just jump in the car, how does that work?

Zack Thomas:                     No, we first start with the buyer consultation. This is where we sit down, we go over their pre-qual or get them introduced to a lender to then get them pre-qualled and we go over the entire buying process. Many buyers in this market, especially the last year, have been first time home buyers.

Mary Beth Harrison:        Right.

Zack Thomas:                     So there is a lack of education out there being that they are first time home buyers. So we really sit down and we go over the process step-by-step so they understand what’s happening, what this amount of money means when they write the first check, the second check, so on, so forth. So we sit down and what we have is a buyer consultation and just over it, go over their market areas, and then once we get from there then we can go out in the field and start looking for that home.

Mary Beth Harrison:        Got you, so we don’t just jump in the car and run until we know kind of what the parameters are that you are all looking for.

Zack Thomas:                     Yes.

Mary Beth Harrison:        Yeah, so get kind of a little road map and then off we go to go find it.

Zack Thomas:                     Yeah.

Mary Beth Harrison:        Which, like you said, knowledge is power.

Zack Thomas:                     Knowledge is power.

Mary Beth Harrison:        That’s absolutely the case.

Mary Beth Harrison:        Well thanks so much for listening, and for all of our Dave Ramsey fans out there, we are one of Dave Ramsey’s ELPs and would love to help you as well. And you can find us on all social media as well as dallasnative.com. Thanks for listening.

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